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Leading By Generation

May 24, 2021
Bill Kimball

managing generation z

They grew up watching YouTube videos to learn how to do anything. They had Google and hovering parents to guide them through their assignments. “They are not afraid to strengthen or cut ties with businesses that don’t match their personal values,” said Christine Selph, global eminence and engagement leader at Deloitte. “During the pandemic, 70% of Generation Z made an extra effort to buy from local businesses.”

That means things like gender-neutral bathrooms, equal pay for equal work, and support for racial inclusion movements such as Black Lives Matter. According to Deloitte, Gen Z is the most likely group to have individuals who identify as nonbinary. But while millennials are drawn to entrepreneurship and startups, Generation Z prefers to move up the corporate ladder. Workers in this age group want challenges and career development without too much risk. A survey by InsideOut Development found that 40% of Gen Zs want jobs with security and stability. Companies that can give them both an entrepreneurial environment and stability stand to win. Like the millennials before them, Generation Z cares a lot about changing the world.

How Can Managers Use Survey Data To Improve Their Teams

They range from about 8 to 24 years old and are currently the youngest generation in the U.S. workforce. Gen Zers were born into a world of technology, making them digital natives. They tend to be very competitive and career-driven, and they place high importance on diversity and inclusion initiatives. “Gen Zers are continuing to distinguish themselves as an entirely unique generation, and managers should not sooner equate them to millennials than they would for Gen Xers and baby boomers,” Welch told business.com. While it’s often assumed that Generation Z is focused solely on technology, talking face to face is our preferred method of communication.

managing generation z

Their priorities, needs, and values are not like the traditional workforce you’re used to. So it’s time you prepared yourself and your business to welcome and understand them.

Both Millennials, otherwise known as Gen Y, and Gen Z have a talent for technology. Gen Y is tech-savvy, while Gen Z can be tech innate, sometimes even overwhelmed by screens and technology. For Gen Z, career goals take a backseat to other life experiences. They’re driven towards things like travel more than job successes.

How Gen Zs Upbringing Impacts Their Views On Work

“They are growing up in a time of chaos, an age of disruption,” Wright told Business News Daily. This article is for small business owners who have Gen Z workers on their payroll or are looking to recruit and retain them.

They are used to interacting with individuals of different races, genders and sexual orientation. And they themselves may be a mix of several different ethnicities. Gen Zers also see the world from a much more global perspective and consider themselves to be members of a global community. They expect businesses to reflect their experience and worldview.

managing generation z

If you have a remote Gen-Z worker, opt for video calls instead of phone calls. If they’re in the office, opt for recurring meetings so that you can build a bond and ensure they’re heard. This can also look like project meetings and team meetings to create a culture that’s bonded— and retainable. How you manage your employees will directly relate to their sense of security. Here are three things to consider in order to successfully manage this next wave of workers, Gen-Z. Managers should review their promotion process to make sure it’s on par with Gen Z’s expectations and that their young team members have access to different people in the workspace and feel included.

How To Manage Generation Z Workplace (spoiler: They Arent Like Millennials)

Setting up a collaborative work environment means setting up Gen Z employees — and your organization — for success. Millennials are generally defined as those who were born between 1981 and 1996, while Gen Z was born after 1996 and before 2010.

Given how socially aware and concerned its members are, Generation Z seeks jobs that provide opportunities to contribute, create, lead and learn. A great way to engage us is to hold weekly team meetings that gather everyone together to recap their achievements. Although members of Generation Z don’t necessarily need a pat on the back, it’s human nature to want to feel appreciated. This small gesture will give us something to look forward to and keep us feeling optimistic about our work. In addition, we tend to work best up against a deadline—for example, needing to have a project done by the team meeting—due to our experience facing time-sensitive projects at school.

  • Cell phone technology is constantly being improved and upgraded and the result is that Generation Z wants to constantly discover these new ways of communicating with friends.
  • They don’t want to be ignored or have to forfeit opportunities to older generations.
  • In the workplace, Millennials have helped drive a greater focus on flexibility and collaboration and a rethinking of traditional hierarchies.
  • Relating to the mindset of other generations can be difficult to impossible.

Of course, all of these should be guided by workforce planning and future of work strategies. After decades of focusing primarily on productivity and profits, are managers equipped to incorporate more “people-focused” practices into their management styles or do they need guidance? Consider investing in modern manager training, especially for hiring managers seeking entry-level talent. While they resist being micromanaged, Gen Zers seek continuous coaching and feedback, as well as internal mobility. Time to dust off that “promotion-from-within” policy and put the systems and processes in place to support internal mobility or risk losing talent to other employers. Get more insights on Gen Z in the workplace in our latest Recruiting Study.

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Send a short email or text so your team feels connected and on track to deliver. Assign a mentor so your employees always have someone to turn to if you’re not available. Add all the pressure from society to reach particular goals by a certain age or start a family when it’s financially impossible, and work can begin to feel pointless and draining. The two generations can also butt heads over matters of technology. Generation Z is generally sharp regarding the topic, while Boomers can be tech-phobic, something that can make the job harder than it needs to be. Because of this, leaders must pay attention to their feedback style for each generation.

managing generation z

Gen Z workers want to feel as though their manager is interested in them, their progress and what they are doing, their progress on projects and so on. They see the relationship between manager and employee like a teacher-student relationship and expect real interest in them by their manager.

Don’t get too far ahead of yourself when it comes to titles, but do know that they’re growers who are hungry to take on responsibility and leadership. Whether you founded your organization with employee experience in mind or are just beginning to explore the concept, there are still important things you can do to improve.

So much so that 51% prefer speaking to friends, family, and coworkers face-to-face rather than text. ● Interested in role hopping and learning different tasks or taking on projects outside of their designated job role. ● Prefer education alternatives like on-demand learning, YouTube tutorials, or on the job development training and are wary of college debt. ● Notorious job hoppers and have little patience for stagnation in their careers. ● Digital pioneers and witnessed the rise of social media, internet, and instant messaging. Here’s what you need to keep in mind when managing Generation Z in the workplace. In 2019, the first graduating class of Generation Z entered the workforce.

Although millennials and Gen Z employees have some commonalities, there are a few key generational differences regarding management preferences and incentives. Although millennials tend to need instant gratification more than Gen Zers, both demographics appreciate it.

Now’s the time to take another look at your company’s processes and procedures, before the flood of Gen Zers begins in earnest. Job titles don’t motivate most Gen Zers – they’re not really interested in climbing the corporate ladder. On the contrary, Gen Zers want a stake in a company’s growth or success. Gen Zers are independent, creative and much more entrepreneurial in how they approach work. Watching their parents struggle to make ends meet during the 2008 recession, and growing up during the evolution of startup culture and the gig economy , likely inspired their initiative. As a result, Gen Zers are less focused on traditional career milestones such as graduating from a four-year college, getting a degree and going to work. They may start a few small businesses in high school, then get a job, and then get a degree online.

A recent study showed that a sense of professional and educational achievement is a top priority for this generation, while others might need one day a week to work from home. While they grow as young employees, offer them full ownership of a project from concept to fruition.